Lawyers Have the Bar. What do Risk Managers Have?

PRMIA Founder and former Board Treasurer Bob Mark in a recent American Banker article asks what is the credential to serve as a risk manager. He notes that a credential is a requirement for lawyers and accountants.

Dr. Mark rightly points out that none of the current credentialing programs for risk managers are required for filling those roles. An important reason that lawyers and accountants must have a credential is that their industries and the public who are served by these individuals are dependent on stringent local, national, and international laws and regulations related to education. For risk management, there are fewer regulatory standards that dictate the education, experience, and knowledge required of individuals who may interact in the industries served. Though the UK has taken steps down the path to establish such standards through the Senior Manager and Certification Regime and Conduct Rules, there are few broadly accepted standards.

As a result, job titles and duties vary, and just as with other professionals who serve within a regulated industry and not as a defined component of those regulations, these roles and responsibilities are defined by the populace of practitioners, through organizations like PRMIA.

PRMIA is at the fore front of establishing standard practices for risk management and a competency matrix for risk managers. In conjunction with standards of practice initiatives with the PRMIA Institute, the current Professional Risk Manager (PRM™) program demonstrates a standard. The PRM™ program was developed by risk management professionals from across the globe, and through the handbooks further defines standard practices for practitioners. Over time, as best practices are informed by the industry, the skills and knowledge required of risk managers will converge across organizations and a common standard of practice will emerge. PRMIA Education Committee is facilitating this convergence by examining trends in the industry and documenting common standards for the industry.

In the meantime, employers may use the PRM™ designation in their hiring and recruitment process as a means to ensure their recruits meet a base level of knowledge and experience requirements that the employers may otherwise have to validate. By seeking PRMIA PRM™ holders to fill their roles, employers can be sure the risk managers’ experience, education and competency are validated making the recruitment process one that can be focused on results the risk manager will bring to the employer.